Bay View Senior Selected as National Merit Semifinalist

Kirsten Hammann

We are proud to announce that Bay View senior Ishita Rai has been selected as a Semifinalist in the 65th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Students honored each year by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) represent less than one percent of high school seniors in the United States and show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Over 1.5 million juniors from around 21,000 high schools vied for entrance into the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2018 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).

Ishita began her studies at St. Mary Academy – Bay View as a freshman, in 2016, and while here has distinguished herself as a multifaceted student. She is active on the Math Team, the Ambassadors Club, Student Council, and the Track and Field Team. In her junior year, Ishita also launched the Vision Club, which works with a clinic in Ghana to provide eye care to those with limited access to treatment. She is a member of the National Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta. Ishita is currently considering many universities. Her top choice is Brown University's Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME), a combined baccalaureate–MD program.

"I feel very proud and grateful," said Ishita. "Everyone at Bay View is supportive of my goals. There are no boundaries on what you can accomplish here. From my interest in anatomy to extracurriculars like Student Council, Bay View has provided me with the platform to explore my interests."

As 1 of only about 16,000 semifinalists nationwide, Ishita is eligible to advance to the Finalist competition. Every Finalist will compete for one of the 2,500 National Merit $2,500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representation basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 220 corporations and business organizations for Finalists who meet their specified criteria. Lastly, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.